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1 Corinthians 9:1-16 (New American Standard)

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Paul's Use of Liberty

1 Am I not 1free? Am I not an 2apostle? Have I not 3seen Jesus our Lord? Are you not 4my work in the Lord? 2 If to others I am not an apostle, at least I am to you; for you are the 5seal of my 6apostleship in the Lord. 3 My defense to those who examine me is this: 4 a7Do we not have a right to eat and drink? 5 b8Do we not have a right to take along a cbelieving wife, even as the rest of the apostles and the 9brothers of the Lord and 10Cephas? 6 Or do only d11Barnabas and I not have a right to refrain from working? 7 Who at any time serves 12as a soldier at his own expense? Who 13plants a vineyard and does not eat the fruit of it? Or who tends a flock and does not euse the milk of the flock? 8 I am not speaking these things 14according to fhuman judgment, am I? Or does not the Law also say these things? 9 For it is written in the Law of Moses, "15YOU SHALL NOT MUZZLE THE OX WHILE HE IS THRESHING." God is not concerned about 16oxen, is He? 10 Or is He speaking altogether for our sake? Yes, 17for our sake it was written, because 18the plowman ought to plow in hope, and the thresher to thresh in hope of sharing the crops. 11 19If we sowed spiritual things in you, is it too much if we reap material things from you? 12 If others share the right over you, do we not more? Nevertheless, we 20did not use this right, but we endure all things 21so that we will cause no hindrance to the 22gospel of Christ. 13 23Do you not know that those who 24perform sacred services eat the food of the temple, and those who attend regularly to the altar have their share gfrom the altar? 14 So also 25the Lord directed those who proclaim the 26gospel to 27get their living from the gospel. 15 But I have 28used none of these things. And I am not writing these things so that it will be done so in my case; for it would be better for me to die than have any man make 29my boast an empty one. 16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for 30I am under compulsion; for woe is me if I do not preach 31the gospel.
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